This Austrian seal of quality for sustainably produced wines was developed in years of scientific work by the Austrian Wine Association together with experts. It is a sophisticated certification system to measure the sustainable working practices of local winegrowing companies. Certified winegrowers have undergone a two-stage process, during which they were also audited by an external audit. Certifications are possible since 2015. These become economic, ecological and social criteria and strictly tested. From the grape harvest over the expansion of the wines to the bottling the entire manufacturing process is based on its contribution to sustainability rayed. Economical use of water, energy, chemical fertilizers and efficient use of machines are evaluated as positively as, for example, fair working conditions, or sustainable economic activity. Only if all requirements are met can a winemaker mark his wines with the quality seal.
The certification system maps the three pillars of sustainability (ecology, economy and social affairs) and evaluates more than 340 activities in the wine-growing business. The rating system is provided to the winemakers by the Austrian Winegrowing Association as an online tool. There you can anonymously enter the operational activities that computer-aided impact on the ground, the biodiversity, the water, the material consumption, the climate that show energy and quality as well as social and economic. Each activity shows whether it is more or less sustainable compared to alternative measures. If the sum of all ratings exceeds a certain level, the operation is assessed sustainably and can be certified. The evaluation representation takes place in a spider diagram according to the traffic light system.
For the certification "Sustainable Austria" a large part of defined goals have to be achieved. The objectives are divided into the processes of grape production, wine production, vineyard new plant, social and economic. The companies can submit an application via the certification system - online tool on the website of Sustainable Austria or initiate the certification process. Sustainably certified businesses are not automatic organic farms produced according to EU directives organic wines, but there are many organic farms that are also sustainably certified. The criteria are in conformity with those of Biological crop protection or the Organic viticulture, Similar certifications are carried out in Germany DINE and Fair'n Green,